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Real Madrid were close to signing Chelsea flop in 2018, move vetoed by Zidane

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Photo by ADRIAN DENNIS/AFP via Getty Images

Real Madrid have boasted of some of the world’s greatest goalkeepers. Iker Casillas in the past, Keylor Navas during their UCL threepeat run, and Thibaut Courtois in modern day are some of the names that make a strong case to be a part of the elite list.

According to reports from Jorge Picon of GOAL Espana, Real Madrid had an agreement to sign Kepa Arrizabalaga in the summer of 2018. Los Blancos were willing to pay the €20 million release clause for him before Zinedine Zidane stopped the transfer.

The former manager is said to have vetoed the transfer to avoid any disruption in the dressing room harmony. Given that Keylor Navas was one of the pillars of the team at that time, bringing in a direct competition would not go down well.

Yet, the club went on to secure the signing of Thibaut Courtois from Chelsea in the same transfer window. The Belgian international was very vocal about wanting a move to the Bernabeu and was awarded the same in August 2018 in a deal worth €35 million.

After being rejected by Real Madrid, Arrizabalaga eventually joined Chelsea to fill the void left by Courtois. The Spaniard was touted to be the next global icon in goal, but soon saw a drastic dip in form.

In his first season in the Premier League, Kepa started 36 games for Chelsea, in which he maintained 14 clean sheets and averaged 2.3 saves per game. However, his deteriorating form soon saw Edouard Mendy take over as the first-choice goalkeeper.

This season, he has only started four league games and has conceded two goals.

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Real Madrid News

Ancelotti-favourite defender will leave Real Madrid if club signs 23-year-old ace

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Photo by David Ramos/Getty Images

With Kylian Mbappe’s signing now a completed objective, Real Madrid turn to what was always considered the second most critical operation of this summer – Alphonso Davies.

The Canadian full-back has been on Los Blancos’ radar for a while now, but with his contract with Bayern Munich running until 2025, his signing is seen to be a tad bit more complicated.

The Bavarians’ firm stance that they wish to persist with the speedster, needless to say, has only made the objective more complicated for Los Blancos.

No room for three

Despite Bayern Munich’s repeated advances towards Davies in recent weeks, Real Madrid are firm that they will attempt to sign the player this summer.

In light of the Canadian full-back’s possible arrival, Cadena SER reveals that Ferland Mendy will almost certainly leave Real Madrid if Davies’ signing is pulled off.

Carlo Ancelotti is clear that he has no room for three left-backs in his squad. One of Fran Garcia and Mendy must thus leave the Spanish capital in such a scenario and the Frenchman is better placed on that front.

Ferland Mendy (L) could leave Real Madrid if Davies arrives.. (Photo by Lars Baron/Getty Images)

Mendy’s current deal in Madrid runs out next year and the player has been informed that a decision over his future at the club will be taken shortly.

On track with Davies

The Spanish outlet also reveal that the Canadian speedster rejected an offer from Bayern Munich in recent hours and that his departure from the Bavarian capital is not ruled out.

Bayern Munich demand a sum of €50 million for the dynamic full-back. Real Madrid, however, have set a spending limit of €30 million for the youngster and will not exceed that sum in any scenario.

Vincent Kompany’s men thus have a critical decision to make, for allowing Davies to run down the final year on his deal may well back-fire as did the case of Kylian Mbappe with PSG.

Real Madrid, as it stands, appear to be in the driver’s seat.

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